Discouraged and fearful

Ethan had his 1st PT session.  They took measurements and could only get him to 6 degrees below neutral on his right foot and 4 degrees below neutral on his left. This is where we were before the surgery.  I do have to differ with them (but I’m not an expert).  When we are doing at home therapy, he is able to do some of the exercises that he was unable to do before his surgery.  He can now actually walk on his heels and the bottom of his foot is off the ground.  That didn’t happen before, he could only pickup his toes.   I am hoping that since he has been “frozen” for the better part of 10 weeks that maybe he just needs to be stretched out.  She said that a normal person would be able to flex 10 degrees above neutral.  Well, we have stretching exercises to do at home and we are to go to PT twice a week. 

The first week, they could only see him once, so I scheduled the next week for 2 sessions and they called me days later and cancelled one of his appointments because they are understaffed and could only do 1 session next week. I am fed up!  I am thinking about taking him to get a second opinion.  There is an orthopedic clinic in Colombus, GA called The Hughston Clinic.  I also noticed for the first time last week is that the right leg he turns out is underdeveloped compaired to his left leg this is from the knee down.  He is still having trouble with his stamina and weakness.

5 Responses to “Discouraged and fearful”

  1. LK, when you wrote “They took measurements and could only get him to 6 degrees below neutral on his right foot and 4 degrees below neutral on his left.”, did you mean 6 degrees and 4 degrees ABOVE neutral? If not, I’ve got something backwards.

  2. They can’t get him back to neutral nor can they get him to flex upwards.

  3. Just a matter of perspective and/or frame of reference. Pulling your toes “up”, is the same as flexing your knee “down” (typically when standing). I’ve heard dorsi-flexion describe as either “up” or “down”, depending on how the flexion is being applied.

  4. Hi
    I was really sorry to hear about Ethan, that must be quite a shock to both of you and discouraging. I really encourage you to seek another opinion, and if you aren’t happy with the way in which your PT is working alongside you then I found it was a good idea to look for someone who will. I did find it was really important to make it clear to people I had to work with long term as to what I needed and therefore what I expected from them i.e. clear instructions, review dates to analyse progress that sort of thing. I remember when my leg finally came out of the moonboot and the PT was able to measure the movement in my ankle he was okish with it, but helping reduce the scar tissue in the ankle area helped it even more. I think the only thing I say is hang in there, find someone who is going to support you and Ethan and provide the kind of medical assistance he needs to come right. It is a long road to fix an Achilles lengthening and you need all the support you can get.

    Take care and best of luck, Karen

  5. I very sorry, but I would listen to nutkin. Get a second opinion and make sure you have a good relationship with your Therapist.

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